By now, it is certainly safe to say that Apple has gained a wider following than just the young, tech-savvy demographic that initially seemed to flock to Mac products. While Mac computers (and specifically the MacBook Pro) have steadily arisen in popularity, the brand’s move to household name is built largely on their fleet of iOS products, and specifically the iPhone. Apple boasts intuitive-yet-sophisticated software as at least one reason that users from a broad range of demographics are drawn to their products.
Most users will find the transition into using an iPhone fairly smooth and will have very few problems with the basic usability of their phone even without much research or practice. While this is definitely a good thing, many users tend to settle into a rut, using only the basic functions of the device and failing to capitalize on additional features. In many cases, this simply means less entertainment so it might not be a big concern. In others, however, it might mean less security and that should definitely be a concern. The iPhone has several security features enabled by default but users (particularly those new to iOS products) should at least be aware of a few additional safety features.
1. Auto-lock and Passcode
The iPhone is set by default to Auto-Lock after 1 minute without use but this setting can be disabled (Settings > General > Auto-Lock) or set to auto-lock after 2, 3, 4 or 5 minutes. When combined with the Passcode Lock setting, Auto-lock is a simple, yet effective, safety feature. When Passcode Lock is activated (Settings > General > Passcode Lock), it requires that a 4-digit code be entered before the phone is unlocked. Enabling both of these settings will prevent unauthorized activity on your phone (be it your 2 year old son or a stranger that has found your lost phone).
2. Wi-Fi Settings
One of the big advantages of an iPhone (or any Smartphone) is Wi-Fi support. This advantage can also be a potential risk because it opens up the possibility that criminals access your phone data via the web. One simple precaution can be taken by enabling the Ask to Join Networks feature (Settings > Wi-Fi > Ask to Join Networks). When this feature is enabled, an alert will pop up before automatically joining any new or unknown Wi-Fi network. This feature gives you the ability to only join networks you trust.
3. Device Usage Restrictions
The iPhone now allows users to enable specific usage restrictions (Settings > General > Restrictions). This setting allows you to block the use of certain features such as Safari, YouTube, or the Camera. It also allows you to block music and video content based on various rating systems. Many users with children take advantage of these settings but it is also a good way to avoid viewing or hearing explicit content unintentionally.